General Motors confirms it will open an information technology center in suburban Atlanta and hire 1,000 specialists to staff the facility for developing products and services for its customers.

The Atlanta unit will mark the third of four so-called “IT Innovation Centers” planned by GM and strategically located throughout the U.S. The auto maker has begun staffing two previously disclosed centers in Austin, TX, and near its world headquarters in Warren, MI.

So far about 700 software developers, project managers, database experts, business analysts and other IT professionals have been hired for the first two locations. A fourth site will be announced later.

Reports emerged last week out of Atlanta that the city had been selected after GM completed the purchase of a 228,000-sq.-ft. (2,118-sq.-m) office building in northern Fulton County. State of Georgia and city of Roswell tax breaks totaling a reported $17.5 million over five years helped seal the deal.

GM would not comment on the IT center until today.

“We look to the Innovation Centers to design and deliver IT that drives down the cost of ongoing operations while continuously increasing the level and speed at which innovative products and services are available to GM customers,” GM Chief Information Officer Randy Mott says in a statement.

“The IT Innovation Centers are critical to our overall GM business strategy and IT transformation,” he says.

GM says it chose the suburban Atlanta region to draw from the large pool of IT professional located in the region.

The auto maker last year began a massive undertaking to bring its IT unit back in house after outsourcing it for years to Hewlett-Packard. In addition to the new IT Innovation Centers, the transformation will consolidate 23 data centers to two, reduce 40% of GM’s applications to common processes and automate some tasks currently being performed manually.

As part of its strategy, GM in October hired 3,000 of the HP specialists performing those duties under contract, and it bought a suite of software and services from HP in what is considered one of the biggest such purchases in the industry globally.

jamend@wardsauto.com